Benzodiazepine Counsellors

Joanne Hansen

Joanne Hansen

BAppSc.(Psychology); BPsych (Hons); M Prof Psych.

Jo joined Reconnexion as a trained volunteer on the telephone support line in July 2007 and has since completed her master’s of Professional Psychology degree. 

Jo began counselling in the benzodiazepine withdrawal program in July 2014 providing support to clients coming off medication generally prescribed for anxiety, sleep disorder or pain management. Withdrawal symptoms from benzodiazepines can be distressing and protracted requiring ongoing support to minimise withdrawal symptoms and to assist in safe withdrawal.

In addition, Jo is a group facilitator for Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST), providing vital training to Reconnexion volunteers supporting people with thoughts of suicide.

Jo supports you to withdraw through tailoring a gradual reduction plan and providing ongoing support. She works collaboratively with you to establish your goals and to empower you through the therapeutic alliance, together addressing emerging issues including anxiety and depression. Her therapeutic practice includes cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), motivational interviewing, solution focused therapy, interpersonal therapy, schema therapy, relaxation techniques and psycho-education.

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Janelle O'Brien

Janelle O'Brien

BA; Grad. Dip. Psych.

Janelle has more than 15 years of experience working with clients in the Alcohol and Other Drugs sector.  She works with individual clients providing counselling for anxiety, depression, insomnia and dependence issues. She has extensive experience developing and facilitating therapeutic group programs, residential withdrawal, family work,and telephone counselling.

 

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Erin Oldenhof

Erin Oldenhof

B.A. (Psych) (Hons); Doctor of Psychology (Clinical) Candidate

 Erin started with Reconnexion as a trained volunteer on the telephone support line early in 2013, and began working as a Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Counsellor in 2015 after completing her psychology degree. As a withdrawal counsellor, Erin will work with you to develop an individualised reduction plan from benzodiazepines, whilst providing ongoing support throughout the withdrawal process. She works collaboratively with you to establish your goals, empowers you through the therapeutic alliance, whilst also addressing emerging issues including anxiety and depression. Her therapeutic practice includes cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), relaxation and mindfulness techniques, acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT), solution focused therapies, and skills training focused on emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness

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Phoebe Newman

Phoebe Newman

BA (Psychology); Grad Dip Psych; Doctor of Psychology (Clinical)candidate

Phoebe started as a volunteer on the support line at Reconnexion providing telephone support for 3 years and she has helped in creating the Benzo Support Group. She is now working at Reconnexion as a Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Counsellor and also has experience working with: anxiety, depression, grief, trauma, hoarding and adjustment disorder, and parent and relationship concerns.

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James Szeto

James Szeto

BSc (Psych), Grad Dip Psych, MCounsPsych, MAPS

James is a psychologist with experience working with anxiety, depression,sleep disorders, relationships, trauma, and related substance use problems.  James first joined Reconnexion on the telephone support line team as a competency trained volunteer in 2011. Since 2017 he has been working as a Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Counsellor offering support to people withdrawing from benzodiazepines, and assisting clients with anxiety,sleep disorders or pain management.

James will work collaboratively with you to assess your particular needs and to develop a comprehensive treatment plan.  James will help you to gradually and safely reduce your tranquiliser use, whilst identifying and addressing related difficulties such as anxiety, depression, and relationship challenges.  His therapeutic practice includes cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), relaxation techniques, mindfulness, brief psychodynamic psychotherapy and solution-focused brief therapy.

 

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Stephanie Wakefield

Stephanie Wakefield

BA (Psych); Grad Dip Psych; M Psych (Clinical)

Stephanie started at Reconnexion as part of our support line team, where she provided telephone support for 3 years, and was also involved in our benzodiazepine support group program. She has completed her Masters in Clinical Psychology, and has experience providing Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) to treat anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and eating disorders. Stephanie is warm, genuine and passionate about supporting individuals experiencing benzodiazepine addiction,chronic pain and sleep difficulties.

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